Speer: Random thoughts for a cold winter’s day

Today is a sampling of thoughts from the desk – neither of which is really significant enough to make a whole column out of.

First, congratulations to Korynn Hincka, a remarkable young woman with a whole lot of athletic talent, for becoming the first woman in North Star League history to score 2,000 points in a basketball career.

Hincka achieved, then surpassed that mark last week in a game against Au Gres.

Korynn is the latest in a string of strong athletes to come from Posen. What always has impressed me about the Posen athletes is because of the school’s size, often they have to compete in various sports and ultimately, they do quite well in all of them.

The same certainly is true of Korynn. Not only is she an intimidating and daunting presence on the basketball court, she also is a “beast ( I use that term affectionately)” in volleyball and track and field.

At the Alpena News Track and Field Honor Roll Invitational the past several years her presence has been felt, as she made herself a regular at the awards podium.

Following graduation this spring, Korynn has signed a letter of intent to play basketball at Grand Valley State. Like athletics, she also does well with academics. In that letter of intent story she said while at Grand Valley she plans on studying either physical therapy or chiropractor medicine.

Are you ready for spring yet?

I’m guessing many of you are. While perhaps not as interesting of a weather prognosticator as Punxsutawney Phil, nor as reliable as the buzzards returning to Hinckley every March 15, still a sure sign of spring in my estimation is the fact Meijer folks have indicated to Alpena Township officials they expect to pull construction permits sometime the end of February. After that point site preparation work could begin on the new M-32 store, with an actual groundbreaking and construction planned for the first part of May.

While the new store would not be completed until the spring of 2015, once construction begins I believe it will open up other areas of the M-32 corridor as well to development. I anticipate the newspaper will be reporting other economic news along the highway as the year progresses.

There is an interesting dynamics at play right now in Alpena. While a lot of concentration has been on M-32, just as much new development has been taking place at the Alpena Mall. The mall has gone through a major positive transformation with new owner Brian Winter. What once was rather a dormant and dying structure has been re-born into a new and vibrant shopping location again.

That has benefited everyone along the US-23-S corridor, where “taking pride in the corridor” has become a united effort of many businesses, property owners and residents.

And, just like along 32, this corridor is being investigated intently again for possible development opportunities.

Who knows, this could be quite an interesting year before it all is over with.